Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Opera/Archive 79

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Portal:Opera for month of February 2009

I'm going to refactor the layout a bit a here so it's easier to keep track of the suggestions and discussion. Voceditenore (talk) 17:24, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Please suggest:

Selected article suggestions and comments:

1. Otello - first performed on February 5, 1887 (but.. not photo!)

  • If the idea is that we show examples of 'best work' (or at least 'better work') on the portal - this isn't one of them. It's extremely poorly referenced, and the labrynthine "Musical Analysis" section is tagged for clean-up per Wikipedia:NOT#PUBLISHER. Voceditenore (talk) 17:24, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
  • I could get a sound file instead of a photo, but we'd need to fix the article first. Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 15:53, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

2. Mazeppa - premiered 15 February 1884 Voceditenore (talk) 18:00, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

3. Don Quichotte - premiered 19 February 1910 Voceditenore (talk) 18:00, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

4. Esclarmonde - US premiere February 10, 1893 Voceditenore (talk) 18:00, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

  • Yes but if it became the February OoM, it would be too late to polish it up for the February Portal.

5. Pelléas et Mélisande - OotM January - Jay (talk) 09:27, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

Composer suggestions and comments:

1. Felix Mendelssohn - 200th birthday

  • Not sufficiently connected to opera. More suitable for Classical Music portal Voceditenore (talk) 17:24, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

2. George Frideric Handel - born 23 February 1685 Voceditenore (talk) 18:00, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

  • Probably better to save for the April portal - 350th aniverssary of his death

3. Gian Carlo Menotti - died February 1, 2007 Voceditenore (talk) 18:23, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

  • Compared to the other two, I prefer Handel. However, Composers project rated the article as B, while we rated it as C? - Jay (talk) 09:27, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

Singer suggestions and comments:

1. Renée Fleming or Renata Tebaldi - Born February but both articles have no photo, any suggestion?

2. Leontyne Price has public domain photo, born February 10, 1927 Voceditenore (talk) 17:24, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

3. Adelina Patti has public domain photo, born February 10, 1927 Voceditenore (talk) 17:24, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

  • I prefer Leontyne Price. The article is good compared to others. - Jay (talk) 09:27, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

Selected picture suggestions and comments:

1. File:Giulio Cesare opera.PNG - from Giulio Cesare, premiere on February 20, 1724

2. File:Venedig Theater La Fenice.jpg - nothing to do with February per se but gorgeous photo. However, many operas had their premieres there in February or March, e.g. Semiramide Il crociato in Egitto, and Rigoletto (the latter a tie-in with the featured audio Voceditenore (talk) 18:23, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Selected audios suggestions and comments: <<Shoemaker's Holiday to fill this up>>

N.B. A round of applause to User:Dendodge for È scherzo!

Feel free to suggest and let me know before or on 29th Jan. Thanks - Jay (talk) 10:55, 17 January 2009 (UTC)

General discussion

I think I'll get a trio of Verdi recordings together. He deserves featuring, right? =) If you'd rather hve it sorted sooner, I have some Gilbert an Sullivan already ready to go. Alternatively, we could do an unthemed potpourri. Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 03:19, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

For the article, would it be too indulgent of a subprject without a portal of its own to suggest W. S. Gilbert? Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 04:13, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

I'm happy to see more work done on Verdi. I think that I have only Aroldo to write a synopsis for, but otherwise the structure of most Verdi articles conforms to Wiki Project practice with a few exceptions, so some clean up is definitely called for. Viva-Verdi (talk) 04:35, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
I have really good recordings from Otello, La forza del destino, and Rigoletto. A bit Caruso-themed, but they're all at the least duets, and I'll check Destill and Scotti and so on too. Dendodge did a very nice É scherzo od é follia, as well. Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 04:58, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Shoemaker's Holiday, the portal is for all articles/audios/pictures related to opera including the works by W. S. Gilbert. Let me know what you have in mind before the 29th. - Jay (talk) 14:12, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Just a thought but Mendelssohn's 200th birthday is this February. It might be nice to honor him in some way.Nrswanson (talk) 14:58, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
We ought to try to bump Mendelssohn up to A class article - perhaps in conjunction with the WP Composers project? I noticed btw he didn't have an Wikiproject Opera link on his talk page, so have added one.--Smerus (talk) 17:15, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
I don't think the opera portal is the place to honour him given his distinctly underwhelming output in that area [1].;-) His article would be far more appropriate for the Portal:Classical music.Voceditenore (talk) 16:47, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Re W. S. Gilbert. It's a brilliant article and can certainly go on an opera portal. If not used this time, we could always use it for April-May portal (died 29 May 1911). Having said that, I don't think we need to stick slavishly to month tie-ins. It's more important to have good articles out there. Voceditenore (talk) 18:29, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

I've put up two suggestions for Verdi, I'll do some more. I suppose we have to include La donna e mobile? I don't have great recordings of it, but I can probably at least get something decent (after a similar amount of work as La fatal pietra took. Thank god my planned Otello work is much easier!) Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 13:14, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

I really wish, by the way, that I could get some volunteers to learn about music restoration from me. There's a lot more I could do with Verdi - hell, there's a lot more I could do with Puccini - but there's a limit to how many I can do alone. If anyone's interested, contact me here or on my talk page. I use free software, so it shouldn't be too bad. Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 13:23, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

Selection based on discussion above (Portal:Opera for February ~ March 2009)

If you have any more suggestions (or disagree with the list), please discuss about it before the 29th. I also need help from project members to expand "Opera news" section in the portal. User:Nrswanson has done a good job with DYK section, he updates it from time to time. - Jay (talk) 14:43, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

I'll be happy to help with updating the news. Do you want me to update it before the portal changes or after? Voceditenore (talk) 16:14, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Whoops! Edit conflict. I agree with all of the above except Featured Composer. In absence of further suggestions, I'd choose Gian Carlo Menotti. I thought we were saving Handel for the March/April portal since the 250th anniversary of his death is in April. For Featured Sounds, I can't comment on the quality as I haven't got OGG but please no more than 6. Frankly, I'd keep it to 3, otherwise they're hardly "Featured", just a pile of sound files. And whatever is chosen, there should be articles on each of the singers in them. Voceditenore (talk) 15:05, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
  • I agree with everything Voceditenore has said. Also, I personally think the Handel biography is rather slim in its coverage. It could easily be doubled or tripled in length for a composer of his stature. I personally hope to expand his biography considerably in March. I would also like to wait on Menotti as our opera coverage for him needs some work. How about Arthur Sullivan? Nrswanson (talk) 15:20, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
I'd be very happy with Arthur Sullivan. But the featured sound files should perhaps be from other composers, otherwise it's Sullivan overkill on the page and his own article is full of files Voceditenore (talk) 15:34, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Agreed. Aren't we doing Verdi for the sound files?Nrswanson (talk) 15:49, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
I hope so. ;-) Voceditenore (talk) 16:10, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

[Unindent]I made eight audios because it's hard to evaluate something you've been working on for several hours. I can compare it to the original, see it's improved, but because I've listened to it so many times, I'm unlikely to be able to judge how bad any remaining flaws are, at least not until some time has passed. I fully support cutting them down to six; but I'd rather not drop to three while we're only updating once a month, simply because, with only one change every two months, and so many composers undone, it's going to be a long before we could use Verdi again, and, when we do, I'll be more encouraged to do work if I can't slack off by just grabbing three from the remaining five. Please do comment on the restorations: I'm not going to get better without criticism, and want to do this as well as I can.

P.S. Arthur Sullivan is fine with me, though I have worked extensively on it, so I'm hardly an unbiased source. =) It's probably Almost-FA, but we want to check a few more sources. Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 16:24, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

I have striked Handel and changed to Arthur Sullivan. About the sound files, please suggest 3 out of 8. Voceditenore, about the news, you can update it at any time. News are not features like pictures or articles. Once you have updated year 2009 news, you can just delete all old news (2007 news). I have archived them earlier - Jay (talk) 13:59, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
A possible solution Jay would be to allow shoemaker to select two sets of three with one to be used in February and the other in March. That would allow him to feature six without it overcrowding the Portal. Also, would you like me to update the DYK section again?Nrswanson (talk) 20:37, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
Sure, he can do that - Jay (talk) 00:49, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Why is it that phrases like "I'm not sure I can do this objectively, maybe someone else should select" has repeatedly turned back into "Shoe, can you choose the things for us"? =P Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 01:06, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Well shoemaker, I personally have never made such a statement. However, it would be nice to include others in the selection process while allowing you, the primary contributor, a big say in what is featured. I suggest that you propose two sets of three audio selections to be featured. Then we can give you some feedback, and if changes need to be made they can be made. That way you get to contribute a lot while still including the rest of the project in the decision. Sound fair?Nrswanson (talk) 01:11, 29 January 2009 (UTC)


Well, fair enough. It's just that I feel a bit uncomfortable judging my own work.

Set 1:

Enrico Caruso, Frieda Hempel, Maria Duchêne, Andrés de Segurola and Léon Rothier's 1914 recording of "È scherzo od è follia", from Verdi's Un ballo in maschera
From Verdi's Il trovatore, Act II. Sung by Gabriella Besanzoni in 1920.

Set 2

"O sommo Carlo" from Verdi's Ernani, sung by Mattia Battistini, Emilia Corsi, Luigi Colazza, Aristodemo Sillich, and the La Scala chorus in 1906.

On relistening, I think I can do better with the two I cut off if I come back in a while - they're just a bit tinned and over-cleaned to my ear. These ones are probably about as good as I can get, at least, given the quality of the originals.

I've tried to mix it up to keep a big concerted number in each, and also to make sure that each had a Caruso-free recording. Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 01:21, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Moving articles to new names without discussion

In the OP article titling guidelines under Operas: avoiding ambiguity. It says:

(1) if the name of the opera has already been used (e.g. for an article on a mythological deity or a play etc), the word opera should be added to the title in parentheses, so for example Macbeth (opera) refers to the work by Verdi to distinguish it from Macbeth which is the play by Shakespeare. I'm inclined to revert, but will not so without consensus.
(2) If there are two (or more) operas with the same title, the second (and subsequent) works take the name(s) of the composer(s) in parentheses. So for example: Miss Julie is the play, Miss Julie (opera) is the opera by Rorem, and Miss Julie (Alwyn) is the opera by Alwyn; or to take another example: Otello is the opera by Verdi, and Otello (Rossini) is the one by Rossini. (The various works should also be listed on any disambiguation page.)"

This has been taken to mean that the subsequent articles on operas of the same name have the composer added to remove the ambiguity. (Otello was created in 2002 and Otello (Rossini) in 2005.)

Yesterday without any prior discussion here or on the article talk page, and contrary to the current guidelines, an editor summarily moved Zaira (opera) (so named to distinguish it from the stub article on Zaira as a given name) to Zaira (Bellini) stating only in the edit summary: "There exist different operas titled Zaira" This of course messed up the Bellini template, which the editor later changed, but she/he failed to refresh the Zaira (Bellini) page so it was producing a double re-direct. Likewise, the template in all the other Bellini opera articles was linking to the redirect. I've now gone through and refreshed them, so at least that problem is solved.

1. Are members happy with the new title? There do exist other Zaira operas by Peter Winter, Saverio Mercadante and Antonio Caldara, but apart from the Mercadante, there is very little information about them and none of them have articles. I am personally inclined to reverse the page move, but am reluctant do so without consensus.

2. Should we revise the guidelines to make them a little clearer? e.g. change:

"the second (and subsequent) works take the name(s) of the composer(s) in parentheses."
to:
"subsequent articles on other operas of the same name take the name(s) of the composer(s) in parentheses"

3. Should we also include in the guidelines something to the effect that articles should not be moved to new titles without prior discussion on their talk page and that if in doubt about the desirability/feasibility of re-naming an article, the issue should be raised here?

Opinions please... Voceditenore (talk) 10:14, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

Yes, "X (opera)" should be reserved for the primary work of that title (when it's clear such a one exists) with links at the top of the page to the other operas by the same name, assuming we have articles on them. For example, 99.9% of the people looking for an article on Wozzeck will be after the one by Berg, not Manfred Gurlitt, and almost everyone who's heard of Gurlitt's work will be aware of Berg's version. --Folantin (talk) 11:06, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Agree — the page should be moved back to Zaira (opera). -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 12:07, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Agree with both of the above. I had an exchange with the editor in question a couple of days ago resulting in this, and (s)he is content to have his/her changes reverted.--GuillaumeTell 12:26, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
OK then, I'll revert it all tomorrow, including the templates, if no one else does it before.Voceditenore (talk) 17:52, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Should, say, Otello (opera) and Otello (Verdi) be redirects to Otello? Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 21:06, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Why? Although Otello (Verdi) (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views) is, I don't think either is needed. Michael Bednarek (talk) 23:40, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
Mainly to improve guesswork - someone could type in, say, Le Cid (opera), Wozzeck (opera) or the like, and not need to worry whether there was some other work of the same name that would confuse things. (Of course, it'd only be helpful if it had widespread usage) Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 00:06, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

Are these considered as operas

I don’t think Nicholas Lens is an opera composer as much as I don’t think his works as opera. What do you guys think?

Thanks - Jay (talk) 16:06, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

From the descriptions, they sound more like slightly-staged oratorios, called operas because a modern audiebce knows the word "opera" but not "oratorio". It's hard to tell from descriptions, of course, and I have no familiarity with the work, nor does it sound like I'd enjoy it anyway.
Those are some pretty extensive quotes from the booklets, though - should we cut them as potential copyvio? Shoemaker's Holiday (talk) 16:48, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
They're not operas. Thank goodness, or I'd have to take a metaphorical knife to them.;-) Shoemaker's right, the articles are basically a collection of copyvios and are ...er... blatant advertisment to boot. I'm going to remove the OP banner from them and the cats. They're better with the Contemporary Music Project. Voceditenore (talk) 17:17, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Update: Cats 'n' banners deleted by me and Jay. I contacted an admin who deals with copyvio and she took a knife to the articles. By the way, these can also be useful tags for articles {{Close paraphrase}} and {{Close paraphrase section}}, although they don't really cover over-long quotations which are violation of Wikipedia:NFC#Text. I'll ask the person who made them if they can make one for too much quoted text as well. Voceditenore (talk) 12:51, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Template:Albéniz operas - Merlin

User talk:Robert.Allen wrote me a message, The booklet which comes with the Merlin recording says that the opera was finished on 25 April 1902. [p. 16, "Isaac Albéniz's elusive Grail" by Jacinto Torres. (Torres has cataloged Albéniz's works for musical theater.)] Further on p. 18 he states that Launcelot remains in unfinished form, while Guenevere was never written. You may want to modify the list to reflect this information. I think it should probably show "(1902)" as the date for Merlin and "(unfinished)" for Launcelot. I do not want to edit the template just yet because that is not what is written in Merlin. I asked User talk:Robert.Allen to join the discussion here or edit the article first, only then I will edit the template - Jay (talk) 11:42, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Addition, the year in brackets is not the completion date but the premiere date. I changed from "unfinished" to "?" because I dont know the premiere date. - Jay (talk) 11:46, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
Actually, the Merlin article does state that it was written in 1902 and doesn't state that it was unfinished. According to the article, it was performed by vocalists with piano accompaniment in 1905 and was finally premièred in its entirety and fully staged in 2003. The second opera in the projected triology, Launcelot (unfinished), doesn't go on the template anyway because there is no article for it. But there is another error on the template. Henry Clifford premiered in 1895 not 1995. Best, Voceditenore (talk) 12:01, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
Also, awhile back there was a discussion here where it was agreed that when an opera premieres many years after its completion date, the completetion date is given in the navigation template instead of the premiere date. Le duc d'Albe is an example. Voceditenore (talk) 12:11, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
I have edited the year and changed the "unfinished" to "?" about an hour ago but for some reason Wiki server is too slow to replicate the changes. However, it is OK now. In Merlin article, it says "Merlin was written between 1897 and 1902", it doesnt say anything about completion. Anyway, I will add 1902 in the brackets - Jay (talk) 13:13, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
The assumption is normally that the first date is when he started and the second date when he finished unless the article specifically states that the work was unfinished. Chanages in templates don't usually show up until the page they're on has been edited again. Voceditenore (talk) 13:22, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Wonky Portal

Is it just me, or is it now all oddly aligned with great swathes of purple? I think the problem may come from the images in the new Selected Article, and Featured Singer and Composer, especially the image in Pelleas. Would making them a bit smaller help? Voceditenore (talk) 13:56, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Fixed now. It was the size of the Fenice photo that was doing it. Voceditenore (talk) 20:35, 29 January 2009 (UTC)